A NEW SYSTEM OF AGRICULTURE. Being A Complete Body of Husbandry and Gardening In all the Parts of them. Viz. Husbandry in the FIELD, And Its Several Improvements...In FIVE BOOKS...

London: for Tho. Woodward, 1726. First edition. Laurence's "most ambitious literary project..." (Henrey p. 421). With a handsome etched frontispiece by van de Gucht showing the Prince of Wales's Richmond Lodge or Ormonde Lodge. The work is dedicated to the Princess of Wales, later Queen Caroline to George II, who would eventually improve Richmond Lodge with Charles Bridgeman.. The lodge no longer exists. (Henrey,p. 421 ). Laurence (sometimes spelled Lawrence), who bears the distinction of having written the first original eighteenth century treatise on gardening, THE CLERGY-MAN'S RECREATION, 1714, was rector at Yelverton in Northhamptonshire where he turned an unpromising patch into a thriving fruit garden over the course of 20 years. The first book in this ambitious work concerns every aspect of agriculture from dung to brickmaking. Book II describes the characteristics and uses of a great variety of forest trees, timber trees, evergreens and flowering shrubs, all suitable for growing in England without "housing". Book Three is about the subject for which the author is perhaps best known, fruit culture. Book IV : the kitchen garden. Book V is devoted to the flower garden and includes "A complete catalogue of Flowers great and small perannual (sic) or annual, usually known or propagated in England, either in the naked Ground or Hotbed." With seven engraved printer's ornaments by Francis Hoffman. Henrey 945; Hunt 466; Johnson, A HISTORY OF ENGLISH GARDENING p. 156. Folio ( 34.4 x 21.2 cm); (xxiv) + 456 (i.e. 452) pp. + etched frontispiece + 2 copperplate engravings (with 3 impressions); with 7 engraved printer's ornaments by F. Hoffman.

Original full leather boards with double gilt ruling, very skillfully rebacked in full leather with gilt ruled raised bands and what is probably the original gilt-lettered title piece; original front pastedown preserved with two bookplates (Hare of Docking, Esq. and L.K. Elmhurst); free endpaper and following blank recent and well-matched; much faded old damp-staining (washed?) appearing in upper margins of some pages, only occasionally appearing in text, at rear pages. The name Charles Martin written in faded ink on title page. A well preserved copy.
ID#: 16219
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